The Ace Heard Round the World

I haven’t posted in the past few days because I stopped worrying about work and the blog.  It was a needed break but it didn’t amount to very much in terms of content or even clearing my head.  However, yesterday something did happen that rarely does.

Ck4 Hole in OneOn the 6th hole on the red course at Limekiln, Ck4 hit the perfect shot.  The hole was playing around 110 yards and Evan led off with a wild shot to the right that hit a tree and bounced in the fairway.  Baker than hit a nice shot that didn’t hit the hill of the green or else it would have been a close shot.  Ck4 stepped up to the tee box and hit an arcing shot that was almost perfectly straight.  The ball hit the green, started rolling towards the hole, and we could tell it was close but it was uncertain how close.  Ck4 and Evan started running up to the green to see how close the shot was and that’s when the ball dropped in.  I was still near the tee box so as I saw them running I could see the ball on the hole.  It must have been centimeters on the lip of the hole for the ball to drop but it certainly did.

A 1 was carded and it’s always fun to be present for a hole in one.  Ck4 also dropped a 40 ft putt on 18 to card a 38 back nine which was also pretty darn good.  This was probably the high note of the weekend.  It should be added that we almost didn’t play golf because it rained from 3:30 to 4:30 and we were just waiting for it to clear.  It indeed did clear for the exact time it took us to play golf and before it got dark.  Quite a show.

 

The Avalon Bike Catastrophe by Jeff

1607050Stortzfest was in full effect in Avalon, NJ 2007, and I was out of my freshman year of college ready to rage.  Obviously I couldn’t go to the bar with Tom, Wagon, Rock and whoever else was there, so I had make my own fun.  I found a house party to go to about 50 blocks away that was a friend of a friend.  Politely I asked Nancy if I could use her bike to head down there because I knew I would have some drinks…she obliged as always for some reason.

120503052235_shepards-beach-partyThe party was wild…I was bumming over some girl which just fueled my incredible ability to drink myself retarded without puking; then by the end of the night I was basically walking in circles back to my bike to head on home.  About halfway in, riding down a main road in Avalon, I happened to notice an oncoming police car.  I tried my best not to swerve, but I knew that I was a potential target as I wasn’t wearing a helmet and it was 3am.  I glanced back in the road to see if I made a clean getaway, and this is where things went south.  The police car was doing a “U” turn!  PANIC!!!!!!

Understand that I am, and always have been, completely confident in my ability to evade police at all costs.  I’m fast,  athletic, and smart enough to know when to make my move.  I always know where the exit is in any party I attend and I intentionally hang near it depending on the threat level.  I have hidden in thorn bushes, jumped fences that must have been 2 or 3 stories high, and literally laid face down in mud to keep from getting an underage drinking citation in high school.  But back to the story…

Sidewalks_image001PANIC!!!!  Once I saw that “U” turn being made I kicked it as hard as I possibly could to the nearest cross block.  I was flying!  My intention was to fly into a back yard, quietly of course, and to hide out until the cop gave up searching for me.  Instead…..BOOOMMMM! I had no idea what hit me! I literally went from 20 mph entering a sidewalk ramp, to wincing in pain on the ground while my bike laid next to me like a dead steed.  Turns out that the sidewalk entrance ramp was not really a ramp.  Ya know, the kind that just have a curb to step onto because some dumbass was too lazy to make it a slope.  There are probably a total of 5 of these babies in Avalon, and of course I sought out the one when biking drunk into the abyss.  I was hurt.  I was really hurt.  But even more so, I was determined not to end up in the holding cell that night.

bicycle-loma-portal-hit-and-run-063012-31239824_9875_ver1.0_640_480I painfully pulled myself off the ground and grabbed the handlebars in a attempt to salvage the bike in this chase.  The police officer must have had a block or two to drive until he would see this pathetic scene.  I had to ditch the bike….my mother would be so upset tomorrow morning.  The tire was a little mangled, so I just drug the bike into the front lawn of the corner house and left it laying on the rocks as I made my move to the fence to continue my GTA style getaway.  “There’s no time for finding the gate” I thought to myself as I knew I was about to be spotted.  I jumped the fence in a drunken fashion and plopped on the other side.  If my bike wasn’t in this person’s front yard, I might have been safe where I was.  Instead I had to get on with the chase on foot…

My initial foot speed is relatively slow for a collegiate track runner, but I swear, I was like a cheetah trying to run in sandals on these backyard rocks. About 6 steps in it was as if The Big Bossman himself clotheslined me back down on my back.  I know you are thinking that the cop had outsmarted me here, but it’s not the case.  This person literally had a clothesline in their backyard, and I ran fullspeed, neck first into it.  I got up slowly this time.  My injuries were adding up and I wasn’t sure that I could, or should, try to continue this torturous attempt to beat the law.  I started a sad limp-jog type movement toward the back fence to get on with my quest when, what do ya know, I was clotheslined again.  WHO NEEDS THAT MANY LINES OF CLOTHES TO DRY IN ONE TINY HOUSE!  Buy a god damn dryer!  I kinda remember thinking that I ought to just stop and bury myself in the rocks and maybe he won’t find me.  Instead I crawled to the back fence in agony and pulled myself over like a fat kid trying to get over a gate.  On the other side I had to walk through a neighbor’s yard and took refuge in a bush.  This is where I called my trusty brother and his hero of a friend Chad to come pick me up.  Chad claims I was crying when I made that call.  I can assure you I was not.

Roxborough High School Alumni Mile

This is an actual picture of the Roxborough Track

This is an actual picture of the Roxborough Track

This post is about more than a mile.

Today I decided to test my physical limitations by time trialing a mile. I texted Sam to meet me at the Roxborough High track and he would stand as a witness. I hadn’t run on a track in about 2 years so I expected the unexpected.

During my 4 years in Manayunk I used to run the track once or twice a week. Living in Philly doesn’t allow the same privileges so I was fairly excited to see what kind of shape I was in. The reason I decided to test myself was because I hadn’t drank a lot this weekend and I’ve been playing ball regularly. I warmed up with 3/4 of a mile and Sam arrived at the meet time.

We made small talk and I told him I didn’t need his assistance and would time it myself. I started off hot running a 67 quarter. I knew it was too fast but the adrenaline was pumping to start. My half time was 2:20 so I had a nice 10 second cushion on a sub 5 pace. I was fading a bit on the third lap and ran a 77. I still had 8 seconds of space and finished with a 79 which was good for a 4:56 mid.  I was pleased.  It was fun running with Sam afterward while he was doing his work out.  I miss this track interaction.  Today gave me a chance to return to a place that I’ve spent a lot of time at and see how things change while still staying the same.

Kids on a trackSam’s almost 23 and I remember being his age and living in Manayunk, working out at the track, and getting drunk on weekends.  At 30, I can’t explain where the time goes. I’ve lived for 8 years longer than him but I remember those days like they were yesterday. Today was a wake up call that the clock never turns back as much as you may want it to. This is the most depressing thought there is if you think about it. I’m not going to get hung up on that though because it leads nowhere. It’s important to always be advancing in life even if you are running circles on a track.

Your Prime

The sample size was 2,116 UK adults.
Yourprime

I’ve pondered this question before and I’m glad that people in their later 30′s and 40′s still feel in their prime. I can guarantee that my prime is going to be between 32-39. Aside from the possible declining athletic ability, my intelligence will continue to grow. Coincidental day for me to post this because I’m heading to a track today to time trial a mile which will be evidence towards my physical state.

ontopoftheworldObviously the best results are the guys in their 80′s who say they are still in their prime. This spurred what I thought was the best reddit comment, “I feel like the ~10% of people who answered “in my prime” at 80+ would’ve also said “in my prime” in every other age group had they been asked. That’s the life I want to lead. I’m 19 now and I’m going to be in my prime until I’m dead.”

Not being an athlete, I think prime refers to when you are the most intellectually stimulated and have the most motivation to make something happen. You have to be at your peak brain capacity to be in your prime and this only comes with experience and knowledge. This is why I think the range from 30-40 is when people should be hitting their prime. The people who answer prime in 20′s probably get burnt out from work, drugs, or life stress and think back to days when they had their free time which puts them in their prime. How can YOU be in your prime when you are raising a family and your main focus is making sure they are being crafted for their prime?

PS. I hate people who answer don’t know.

Four Eyes – Childhood Trauma

screen568x568I’ve needed glasses since the 3rd grade.  I didn’t wear contacts until 10th grade.  For those 7 years, I was too embarrassed to wear my glasses in school.  This became quite problematic when you can’t see the board.  I someone how managed without wearing my glasses consistently until 8th grade, Mr, Sieger, algebra.

61VZdTVJaWL._SL1500_Mr. Sieger was a no BS math teacher.  After every quiz or test he’d post your score outside his classroom by your Student ID and it was nerve racking starting from the top and scanning towards the bottom which is where I usually was.  The reason I hated this class so much was that he used the projector to post every quiz.  Naturally the seating chart had me sitting in the back and this didn’t bode well for seeing his chicken scratch math equations.

cant-see-without-glasses-velma-scooby-dooI always carried my glasses around in my book bag but I would never use them.  One day Mr. Sieger had his standard quiz on the projector and I couldn’t make out any of the writing.  I had to suck it up and wear my glasses.  After putting them on and clearly seeing the projector, Chung Lee, who was in the row beside me looked at me and started laughing hysterically.  It’s one of those moments where you know why you don’t where glasses.  This was probably for the best because after that day I didn’t have a problem wearing the glasses.

This tale makes me laugh because I was so scared of fitting in that I essentially walked around life with no clarity.  As I look back, how did I play sports well?  I couldn’t see the ball.  I used to be mortified to bat in travel baseball when the game started getting too dark to see the ball.  It’s funny because I didn’t tell the coach or anything, I just would get up to the plate and hope to hit the fuzzy ball with my bat.  This is probably why I batted .250.

238Finally in 10th grade I got contacts and life was wonderfully better.  Why I didn’t wear my glasses is certainly questionable because it wasn’t like I was a cool kid or anything.  I was already a nerd playing video games and Magic the gathering, I’m not sure what I was trying to preserve.  Life sure was different as a kid.

Woman in the Workplace

Stortz tool secretary

Stortz tool secretary

This email I received goes down as one of the most classic responses I’ve ever received in business.  The one woman company is in Washington state and I issued a PO about 2 months ago.  I assumed it would take longer than normal but I started wondering what was happening when I hadn’t seen anything for about a month.  I tried emailing and calling and wasn’t getting anywhere.  This is the response I got a few weeks after trying to track her down.

 

Tom,

I apologize for the delay in answering emails.

I didn’t realize I would have orders past June.  Additionally, I just welcomed another child into my family and have been recovering from surgery.  I’m ready to get back to business and back to work.

Is your order a priority?  I ran out of stock in March and was advised by the doctor to put off manufacturing until after the baby was born.  

I’ll get started this weekend and hopefully be able to ship within a few days.

Again, I apologize for being unavailable.  I hope my absence has not been too much of an inconvenience.

 

woman_ashamed_pictureFor anyone who reads this and wants to learn a thing or two about business, here’are few pointers.

  • Never admit your business is this slow by saying “I didn’t realize I would have orders past June”.  Not only are you saying you do no business but you are saying how stupid you are for not having anyone even checking your business on even a WEEKLY basis.
  • I don’t care that you welcomed a child into the world.  Your personal life has nothing to do with me.  This is only an excuse for why you weren’t doing your job and excuses are for the weak.
  • Is your order a priority?  Are you fucking kidding.  No Ms., ship it whenever you feel it’s good for you.
  • I know for a fact you don’t manufacture this product so this is a straight up lie.  Why is a single woman who is having a baby manufacturing hand tools?

This is what she should have written and I wouldn’t be posting it on my blog:

Tom,

This is quite embarrassing but I was irresponsible in regard to my business.  I did not take appropriate actions in setting up proper communication while I was planning for maternity leave.  I’ve since received your order and will have it shipped as soon as I can.  I’m sorry for the delay and I appreciate your patience.

 

 

What I Loved as a Stupid Kid

I re-read the Advanced Genius book which is hilarious and insightful at the same time. It’s a book that promotes finding ways to like something instead of looking for ways to hate it. This made me think about things that I truly enjoyed and this brought me back to my childhood which is when I demonstrated a feeling that was more natural than today. This is tougher to explain but I think as you get older it’s harder to “love” something. This brings me to this list of childhood joys.

Jim Fenerty - Head Coach of GA Basketball

Jim Fenerty – Head Coach of GA Basketball

Germantown Academy Basketball Camp

For 3 weeks in the Summer a private school hosted a basketball camp M-F. GA has a great basketball reputation and put on a premier camp. Coaches from local colleges would give demonstrations and their current players would act as the instructors. They even brought Kobe in one week but he had “car troubles”. Rasheed Wallace threw a basketball at my head.

There were 3 leagues depending on your age group and you’d spend the whole day going through drills and playing games. It’s possible now that I look back at it that this was the most fun time in my entire life. One key memory I had was when I played Bud in a 1v1 game for the best one on one player of the league which was determined in a tournament structure. I think my career record vs Bud is pristine which I’m sure he would remember better than me. There was also a scenario called a lightning game when the game would start with a tie score and there would be 2 minutes on the clock to play out. With 3 seconds left, down by 2, I got the ball and hoisted a shot from (in my memory) way beyond mid court and swished it. That got me camper of the day. Not only was this camp incredibly fun, but it made me a better basketball player which never left me.

Capture the FlagManHunt & Capture the Flag

This is kind of a weird one but I loved the game Manhunt and Capture the Flag. During summer nights a group of us would get together at Pishy’s house and use his yard and the Herman’s to play. The game entailed hiding and running which is about as basic as it gets but I think the element of out smarting the people trying to catch you was the allure. “They’ll never find me hiding 50 feet up in this tree.” No shit. The all time thrill was hiding in the actual base where prisoners were kept and tagging them out as they came in. Capture the flag was equally fun. I’m sure if I was slower these games wouldn’t be as satisfying.

Complex, best multiplayer level.  No question.

Complex, best multiplayer level. No question.

Goldeneye

When I first played Goldeneye I was blown away by the multiplayer. You’re telling me that 4 people can play at the same time?!?! I went home and told JC that I had to get the new console and that’s exactly what I did. This was perhaps the best multiplayer game of all time in relation to when it was out. This was before killing was fragging and screen looking was a major factor. Once you mastered this game, you could have incredible multiplayer action. 2v2 was also a huge hit. Anyone who knows anything about this game knew that paintball mode, licensed to kill, with pistols was the best multiplayer set up. I could say without a doubt that I loved this game.  “No OddJob”.  I was always Mishkin.  SOF would eventually replace this but I’ll get into that later.

The Favorite to Tweet Ratio

Twitter-StarFavoriting a tweet is a nice way of giving a thumbs up to what you like. You can favorite tweets that are in your feed or favorite tweets that are sent directly at you. Getting a tweet favorited by the person you send it to is a huge overlooked element to why Twitter is popular. What is shows is that the person actually interacts with you which makes you feel special. Feeling special has an earthly aura that is indescribable except using the words earthly aura. I’ve taken 7 personalities ranging from various industries and broke down their interaction with their fans by creating a Favorite to Tweet ratio.

 

The Twitter Personalities

Howard Stern – King of All Media aka @howardstern
Joined February 2011 – 5,179 Favorites, 2,756 Tweets

Howard Stern Twitter

Favorite to Tweet Ratio - 1.87.  This is pretty interactive considering how busy his day must be.  The key to Howard’s success is his interaction with his fan base and this shows some dedication to staying involved.  I have a feeling someone helps maintain his account because with America’s Got Talent and all the people that rely on him, I don’t think Tweeting is his top priorty.  I would tweet a lot too though if I had 1.57 million followers.  When Howard Tweets, people listen.

 

Madison Ivy – Queen of the Nude Selfie aka @madison420ivy
Joined October 2009 –  3,423 Favorites,   4,800 Tweets

Madison Ivy Twitter
Favorite to Tweet Ratio – .71 - A pornstar should interact with the people that masturbate to them.  She tweets mostly pictures of her naked or smoking weed which is pretty sinful but I enjoy it because she’s truly being herself.  I’ve followed some pornstars in the past and usually unfollow them for lack of interest but she keeps me up, to date.

 

Katy Perry – Queen of the Katy Cats aka @katyperry
Joined February 2009 – 855 Favorites, 5,990 Tweets

Katy Perry Twitter
Favorite to Tweet Ratio – .14    The thing with Katy is that she doesn’t need Twitter.  She performs in front of 30,000 people on a nightly basis which is about as interactive as it gets.  This low ratio shows she is all about self promotion but she’s doing it to interact.  She seems to be a good person with her philanthropy and I read her article in Rolling Stone and she seems all there.  I find her Twitter game pretty bad and rarely see anything out of her feed that I like. Her Instagram account though is another story.

 

Jim Cramer – Mad Money aka @jimcramer
Joined March 2008 – 3,521 Favorites, 44.7k Tweets

Jim Cramer Twitter

Favorite to Tweet Ratio – .08    Cramer joined Twitter earlier than anyone else on this list which shows his advanced thinking towards technology.  His ratio is a very deceptive number because Cramer’s tweets are actually all about helping people invest.  Technically, his Tweets should also be counted towards his favorites.   He is a human being who has embraced Twitter as a means of connection and more power to him because he understands the potential it has.

 

Johnny Manziel – Johnny Football aka @JManziel2
Joined July 2011 – 701 Favorites, 3,724 Tweets

Manziel Twitter

Favorite to Tweet Ratio – .18  I’d perceive Johnny as egotistical as they come and this number is actually much higher than I’d think it would be.  The fact that he favorites anything surprises me.  If you aren’t on the money team, you aren’t qualified to hang with Johnny.  I just started following him so my sample size is small but I’d guess he tweets about himself and hanging with other famous people.

 

McKayla Maroney – Ms. Not Impressed aka @mckaylamaroney
Joined September 2011  9,485 Favorites, 4,515 Tweets

McKayla Maroney Twitter

Favorite to Tweet Ratio – 2.1  If you follow McKayla on Twitter you’d know there is a buzz about her intentions.  Some argue she knows she’s gorgeous and plays coy for the camera and others say she is just a kid.  The one thing undeniable are her pictures are steaming.  She’s also on the younger side so she is more with how the younger generation tweets.  This amazing 2.1x favorite to tweet ratio is tremendous interaction with fans and I think she pretty much embraces celebrity status without even trying that hard.

 

Jonah Hill – Mr. “Suck My Dick, Faggot” aka @jonahhill
Joined February 2011 –  1 Favorite, 1,587 Tweets

Jonah Hill Twitter

Favorite to Tweet Ratio – 6.3 e-4  Not much to say on the worst ratio in the history of Twitter (this is unverified but has to be close).  I’ve heard interviews with him on Howard Stern and how he says he comes off the wrong way in the media.  He does seem like a genuinely good guy but it’s hard to look past the favorite number.  He either doesn’t care about other people or is doing it on purpose.  Probably the latter but I’m unsure of the reason.  Maybe I’ll tweet at him and get it favorited!

 

 

Conclusion

Everyone likes having their tweets favorited and it shows something about your character how often you do it.  Any ratio that gets to be 1:1 is phenomenal.  It shows you tweet as much as you interact which is probably ideal.  Anything above that starts entering the you favorite everything category which means the favorite starts to lose meaning.  Anything under means you are selfish or don’t like anything.  Just kidding, it just means you don’t know the power of the favorite.  My 52 favorites to 793 tweets is pretty pathetic for someone spear heading a ratio but until I had someone else favorite my tweet in recent days, I didn’t understand.  Now you do.  If you read this post and like it, how about a comment or a follow.   Interaction takes the cake.

The Selfish Self

People never worried about themselves as much as they do today. Back in the day it used to be what can I do to make myself more productive. What skill can I pick up to find a job that will pay me? How can I advance myself with limited resources. Today we have unlimited resources and education yet society is seemingly dumber than ever. Here are some examples:

Some selfies are cool.  Most aren't

Some selfies are cool. Most aren’t

Selfies – Holding a camera in front of your face and taking a picture of where you are has to be the most egotistical thing since googling yourself. What is the point here other than asking for attention from others? Would you still take the selfie if it sat in your phone’s memory and it couldn’t be displayed? Don’t get me wrong, if the selfie warrants a picture because your in an awesome location or with a huge celebrity that’s cool, but not in your bedroom.

ice-bucket-challengeIce Bucket Challenge – The person I want to be friends with is the guy who hears about the challenge, learns about ALS, donates to the fund, and doesn’t tell a soul.  What this video to really learn about ALS.   ALS has gotten lost behind the popularity of the challenge. In no way is this a bad thing because I didn’t understand ALS previously and now I do so it absolutely spread awareness and raised $11 million dollars (this number is pitiful by the way). When people are making compilations of failed Ice Bucket Challenges, the message got lost.

imagesBeing an Irritant – People will irritate people on purpose. They’ll take positions that they don’t believe in because they can. Being an irritant serves no positive function. A major difference in being an irritant verse making a point is actually backing a position up with hard facts and conviction.  It’s not wrong to disagree, but it is to disagree on purpose.

open-mind-for-a-new-world-paulo-zerbatoKeep an Open Mind – As I get older I start removing my opinion when I consider a position. This is instinctively difficult because once you hear something you disagree with it’s easy to discount it. I’ve learned that even though I may think it sucks or is wrong, giving people the benefit of the doubt is important. Once you’ve thought about the subject, had time to consider the viewpoints, a decision can be made.